John R. Adler, Jr., MD

Founder and CEO
Portlrait of Dr. John Adler

John R. Adler, Jr., MD is the CEO of Zap Surgical Systems. Dr. Adler is world-renowned for inventing the CyberKnife® and the related field of image-guided therapeutic radiation.

Since 1987 Dr. Adler has served on the faculty at Stanford University, being appointed the Dorothy and TK Chan Professor of Neurosurgery and Radiation Oncology in 2007. Dr. Adler completed his entire neurosurgical education at Harvard, excepting a one-year fellowship at the Karolinska Institute with Lars Leksell, the “father of radiosurgery.” As an academician, he is the author or co-author on more than 300 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters and serves or has served on the editorial boards of eight different peer-reviewed journals. In 2009, Dr. Adler founded the Cureus Journal of Medicine, which today is one of the largest medical journals in the world. Dr. Adler is also a named inventor on more than 20 patents.

While creating CyberKnife, Dr. Adler founded Accuray Inc (NASDAQ: ARAY) in 1992 to commercialize his invention. Up until 2009, he served in varying roles at Accuray, including CEO, Chief Medical Officer and Chairman. To date, Accuray technology has been used to treat more than one million patients and most modern radiation equipment now incorporates Dr. Adler’s basic idea for image-guided targeting. In 2002 Dr. Adler founded the CyberKnife Society, later (2012) renamed the Radiosurgery Society. He also serves or has served on the scientific advisory boards of 7 different medical device or pharmaceutical companies. In 2014 Dr. Adler founded ZAP Surgical Systems with a mission to “Advance Cancer Treatment for All Humanity”.

Dr. Adler’s achievements have been recognized by Stanford University with its Ideals of Entrepreneurship Award, The Santa Clara County Medical Association Outstanding Achievement in Medicine Award, The Gamma Knife Society’s Lars Leksell Lecturer Award, AANS Cushing Award for Technical Excellence and Innovation in Neurosurgery, Stanford’s Thomas J. Fogarty, MD, Lecture and The American Radium Society’s Janeway Medal for Lifetime Achievement.

Dr. Adler received both his A.B. (Biochemistry) and M.D. at Harvard University.